Thoughts on the RT-AC3100 vs RT-AX58U?

spiff72

Occasional Visitor
Hey all,

I am struggling with the AC3100 I bought a month ago, and I can still return until mid-January. I get a lot of wifi drops, weird DNS lookup delays/failures, and other issues (several power cycles have been required over the last week.

The AC3100 is my main router, and I have another AC68U router serving as a wireless repeater in the basement to provide wifi to devices downstairs (including several wired devices.

I happened to stop at Best Buy to kill some time, and they had an RT-AX58U on the shelf for the same price I bought the AC3100 for, so I bought it with the thought that I would just return the AC3100. However, I am finding VERY little info on this AX58U online (is it a BB exclusive?). A coworker was telling me about his Ubiquity setup (he recommended the UniFi Dream Machine) and it looked impressive, but I don't know if it is $300 impressive - I don't have a good way to run ethernet backhaul to multiple access points around the house.

I know that the AX58U is Wifi6, but I don't have any of these devices (yet - one laptop is ordered and due in a few weeks). Should I even bother with the new Asus? It probably can't be worse than the experience with the AC3100, but I am wondering if I just have the AC3100 misconfigured somehow. I had an additional AC68U as my main router for a long time, but a power failure seemed to kill (or at least maim) it and I gave up trying to get it fixed and bought the AC3100.

Just looking for opinions/thoughts before I open the package of the new AX58U (or return it unopened). I know that this one would not be compatible with Merlin, which I really liked on the original AC68U, but I never tried flashing it on the AC3100 because I wanted to make sure it was a keeper first. If I do flash Merlin, it is reversible before returning if it came to that, right?

Thanks!
 

digits n bits

Regular Contributor
I actually bought the AX58U about a week ago from Best Buy and it is an exclusive to Best Buy. If you look on ASUS website it’s the only option to purchase from.

I also own an AX88U so it was easy to compare the two. Back story: I’ve also used Netgear RAX80, Netgear AX-4 (similar specs to AX58U) and the TP-Link AX-3000 for comparison. I’ve got 2200 sq. ft., 35+ clients N and AC, and five AX clients. 1 gig service from Spectrum.

Results: Any AX router from Netgear should be avoided period. Absolutely awful firmware, buggy, not worth the price at all. Both are gone. The TP-Link was OK, worked pretty well and it was $129.

So far I’ve used the AX58U for about a week and it’s been good. Strong signal, works with all my gadgets, no signal loss or weird dropouts. That being said it doesn’t have the range of the AX88U so it comes up a bit short there. But if you’re dealing with a smaller space it’s a great choice.

Personally after using a number of AX routers I’d go with the AX88U. Screaming fast, rock solid, AX works, covers a huge area and the November firmware update put it over the top. Found one on Craigslist for $180 and it’s easily the most reliable AX router out there along with the AX58U. Can’t go wrong with either one.
 

spiff72

Occasional Visitor
I actually bought the AX58U about a week ago from Best Buy and it is an exclusive to Best Buy. If you look on ASUS website it’s the only option to purchase from.

I also own an AX88U so it was easy to compare the two. Back story: I’ve also used Netgear RAX80, Netgear AX-4 (similar specs to AX58U) and the TP-Link AX-3000 for comparison. I’ve got 2200 sq. ft., 35+ clients N and AC, and five AX clients. 1 gig service from Spectrum.

Results: Any AX router from Netgear should be avoided period. Absolutely awful firmware, buggy, not worth the price at all. Both are gone. The TP-Link was OK, worked pretty well and it was $129.

So far I’ve used the AX58U for about a week and it’s been good. Strong signal, works with all my gadgets, no signal loss or weird dropouts. That being said it doesn’t have the range of the AX88U so it comes up a bit short there. But if you’re dealing with a smaller space it’s a great choice.

Personally after using a number of AX routers I’d go with the AX88U. Screaming fast, rock solid, AX works, covers a huge area and the November firmware update put it over the top. Found one on Craigslist for $180 and it’s easily the most reliable AX router out there along with the AX58U. Can’t go wrong with either one.
Great feedback - thanks for the response!

I spent my lunch hour looking into the Netgear Orbi as another option. Basically 2 floors in my house, totaling just under 2000 sq ft.

I am considering trying a factory reset on the AC3100 and the AC68U and trying the AiMesh option. It sounds like it works well for some, but not so much for others, and maybe it is worth a shot while I still have plenty of time left in my return window.
 

Kal-EL

Very Senior Member
I acquired a Asus AX58U about a month ago and for me it's been 100% rock solid. No dropouts no disconnects it just works. I find the range about the same as my AC3100. Honestly I like to play around with routers with the AX58 I have not been able to do that because you cant fix whats not broke. Seriously this router just works. Very happy with it.
 

spiff72

Occasional Visitor
Thanks to both of you for the input. The AX58U is still in the packaging here, since I decided to take one more shot at the AC3100.

I factor reset both the AC3100 and the pair of AC68U that I have here, and set up the 3100 as an AiMesh router, and got one of the AC68U connected as a node. I tired adding the other AC68U as a second node, but it won't show up after numerous tries. (This was the one that served as my main router until it flaked out on me and prompted the purchase of the AC3100).

So far so good, but I will see how it goes for the next few days. The only thing that is acting oddly is the HP "Scan to Computer" popup warning that comes up every 10 minutes on my laptop. This normally would happen when the computer falls off the network, but I am wondering if this might be a handoff from node to router (and vice versa). Again, will wait and see.
 

spiff72

Occasional Visitor
Ugh. I spoke too soon. My kid is complaining about freezes and drops now. I have reverted the AC68U to just be a repeater again to see if it is any more stable this way.

I used to sort of enjoy making tweaks to the network, but now this is just getting frustrating. I might be better off setting up the AC68U as a media bridge instead, since the main thing I wanted was "psuedo-wired" ports for some raspberry pi's I have in the basement office. (Get rid of the extra repeater networks).

I am getting closer to busting open the AX58U, or just giving up on the Asus stuff and trying an Orbi mesh system or even the Ubiquit UniFi Dream Machine.
 

spiff72

Occasional Visitor
Hopefully my last update...

I gave up on the AC3100, and returned it. Installed the AX58U, and so far it seems more stable than the AC3100
 

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